- Title: Iraq's Kurds may delay independence vote for concessions from Baghdad: official
- Date: 20th August 2017
- Summary: (SOUNDBITE) (Kurdish) FLUTES STREET VENDOR, ABU BAKR, SAYING: "We are always with the referendum. We are going to hold the referendum. For 100 years we have been struggling for this day to come, to become an independent state. We have many experiences with the Baghdad government and until now they were not serious with the constitution or the law. They were always manipulating us and now we will hold the referendum and become independent." ERBIL MARKET PRODUCTS ON SALE AT ERBIL MARKET DECORATIONS SHOWING KURDISTAN PRESIDENT MASSOUD BARZANI, KURDISH FLAG AND JESUS CHRIST ACTOR AND DIRECTOR, TARIQ AKREYI, MAKING TEA AKREYI MAKING TEA (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) ACTOR AND DIRECTOR, TARIQ AKREYI, SAYING: "The people of this area have aspirations, they want to be their own selves, independent and free. After the Sykes Picot agreement, the whole area was divided into four or five areas. Every area had pressure from governments to stop them from not only using their language and culture, but also to prevent them from having their own independent thinking." VARIOUS OF ERBIL RESIDENTS SEATED ERBIL MARKET
- Embargoed: 3rd September 2017 21:15
- Keywords: Iraq Kurds referendum Barzani Baghdad U.S. politics independence
- Location: SULAIMANIYA AND MAKHMOUR AND ERBIL, IRAQ
- City: SULAIMANIYA AND MAKHMOUR AND ERBIL, IRAQ
- Country: Iraq
- Topics: Government/Politics,Elections/Voting
- Reuters ID: LVA0036UYMYX3
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Iraq's Kurds may consider the possibility of postponing a planned September 25 referendum on independence in return for financial and political concessions from the central government in Baghdad, a senior Kurdish official said.
A Kurdish delegation is visiting Baghdad to sound out proposals from Iraqi leaders that might convince the Kurds to postpone the vote, according to Mala Bakhtiar, executive secretary of the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) Politburo.
The United States and other Western nations fear the vote could ignite a fresh conflict with Baghdad and possibly neighbouring countries, diverting attention from the ongoing war against Islamic State (IS) militants in Iraq and Syria.
The Kurds have been seeking an independent state since at least the end of World War One, when colonial powers divided up the Middle East under an agreement that became known as the Sykes-Picot agreement and left Kurdish-populated territory split between modern-day Turkey, Iran, Iraq and Syria.
- Copyright Holder: REUTERS
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